An opportunity to combine style and substance

Beauty product consumers in 16 megacities are convinced – packaging isn’t a problem-maker; it can be a problem-solver. Even a hero. A new consumer panel report from BillerudKorsnäs reveals that packaging sustainability is one of the most vital aspects of a product when shopping – for all generations, including conscious millennials.

“Today’s consumers of beauty products expect brands to be sustainable,” says Jon Haag, Director Consumer Insights, BillerudKorsnäs.

“It is in fact the single most differentiating aspect for most products – including both beauty and food products – today. In other words, you can do your brand a huge favour at the same time as you work towards a more sustainable future,” continues Jon.

The consumer panel uses an NPA (Net Positive Attitude) index to measure trends in attitudes. The scale goes from -100 to +100, with +30 as an indication of a very positive attitude. “Packaging sustainability” got a global score of +54,1, a very high indication that this is something consumers are passionate about.

But what does packaging sustainability mean in reality for, for example, a cosmetics brand? Reducing packaging weight by using strong, but light, premium cartonboard – i.e. lightweighting – is, of course, one sure way to reduce carbon footprint. Using disruptive design thinking and an innovative approach opens up for even more possibilities.

“To my knowledge there have been very few attempts at developing smart packaging in the beauty industry. Imagine, for example, the possibilities if you design new packaging for eye cream that you normally apply with your fingers from a small can or tube, and instead allow the packaging to serve as an applicator. That way, you could avoid having to waste 10-30% of expensive eye cream on your fingers,” says Jon Haag. “Both consumers and the planet benefit”.

The consumer survey was performed in megacities such as Jakarta, Shanghai, London, Berlin and Karachi and also shows regional differences in the level of customer dedication to sustainability, with Asia – most notably Manila, Mumbai and Dehli – scoring very high on the index.

 On a global level there is however a strong consensus that consumers will be loyal to brands that take a serious approach to sustainability. Being a "Helpful Brand" and delivering products in a packaging that clearly brings sustainable benefits for people and society had the highest NPA of all factors in our survey; +75.

So, which premium beauty brand will be the first to combine style and substance – and show its customers it is listening?

Want more insights from the BillerudKorsnäs Consumer Panel 2017?

Download the BillerudKorsnäs Consumer Panel 2017

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